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NASA Plans for Nuclear To Power Human Exploration Missions on the Moon and Mars

Sept. 14, 2020 (EIRNS)—According to SpaceNews Sept. 2, NASA and the Department of Energy are requesting proposals from industry to develop “a compact nuclear power system that can support the agency’s long-term lunar and Martian exploration plans.” NASA is seeking development of a 10 kW fission power system that could be placed on the Moon as soon as 2027, comparable to plans for production of small modular nuclear reactors of 50-70 MW for economic development on Earth. The purpose is power for long-term lunar surface activities, especially during the two-week night which rules out solar panels. An Aug. 20 statement from DOE said 10 kW “will be enough to power a portion of the infrastructure and equipment needed by astronauts on the lunar surface.”

General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems reported Sept. 9:

“General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) announced today that it has delivered a design concept of a Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) reactor to power future astronaut missions to Mars for a NASA-funded study. The study, managed by Analytical Mechanics Associates (AMA), explored a design space defined by key performance parameters as well as figures of merit. The GA-EMS design exceeded the key performance parameters and optimized the NTP reactor for manufacturability, the highest ranked figure of merit.”

Forget any and all of these NASA plans and projects if Joe Biden becomes President.

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